The first quarter of 2015 hasn’t even passed and we have more than five films lined up for the year. But the best part about this is that all films do not follow the same old script and cast and the latest offering Karachi se Lahore (KSL) is a fresh road-trip film, a genre which according to director Wajahat Rauf has never been experimented in Pakistan before.
The film boasts a cast of celebrities with diverse backgrounds. The crew comprises TV, film and theatre actors like Javed Sheikh, Rashid Naaz, Ayesha Omer, Eshita Syed, Shehzad Sheikh and Yasir Hussain.
The cast looks forward to its release in the Eid season on July 31. This was officially revealed in a pre-release event held at Karachi's Pearl Continental hotel which also gave the first glimpse into the film's trailer.
What's there to see in Karachi se Lahore?
- A cast to look forward to: Javed Sheikh, Ayesha Omer, Shehzad Sheikh and Yasir Hussain
- Music being looked after by Noori's Ali Noor and Ali Hamza along with Shiraz Upal
- First of its kind road-trip rom-com in Pakistan.
Filming 36-hour real time journey:
Rauf who has his fair share of experience in the industry with dramas like Karachi High, Minglish and the recent Soteli dubs the film as the first Pakistani road trip movie: "This is the first road trip film to be made in Pakistan. It covers the 36-hour journey from Karachi to Lahore in real time, where the characters face obstacles, overcome them and undergo personal growth.”
With recent films like Jalaibee and Good Morning Karachi that did not do as well at the box office as expected, with their plots being among the reasons, KSL is expecting to reach out to the audience with 'local' humour, and a narrative which speaks of life, development and childhood friendships.
Also read: 'Karachi se Lahore' set to hit screens on July 31 2015
"Between the trip from Karachi to Lahore, the audience will see all sorts of characters from all ethnicities; Pashtun, Baloch, Sindhi everybody is incorporated; the film revolves around our culture completely," Rauf tells Dawn.
|Director Wajahat Rauf at the event. — Photo by Yumna Rafi|
The film's Director of Photography (DOP) will be Rana Kamran who shares the same credentials for the box office hit Na Maloom Afraad.
NOT an item number:
The teaser of the film which was released earlier this year with Ayesha Omer's 'item song' created quite a buzz. However, upon being asked about it, Ayesha flashed a mysterious smile and commented that it is "not an item number, you will figure that out."
|Cast and crew filming a song in Lahore. — Photo Courtesy: KSL's Facebook page|
Yasir Hussain had further clarified that it was a "situational song" which the story demanded, an item number as the Bollywood has defined it for us is "added in the film and is performed by a female actor who is not part of the film cast".
The cast speaks:
Javed Sheikh, who is also starring in the movie along with his son taking the lead role, candidly shared how he and Rauf embarked upon the journey together to make the film: "Wajahat had no prior experience in making a film; when he shared the script with me, I wondered what he would make. But when I read the beginning, it was so good, I was a bit shocked."
Having starred in numerous films in Bollywood, Sheikh went on to say that India is hooked on to Pakistani dramas: "They (Bollywood) are in awe of our stories and cast; I want the same for Pakistani films. I once dreamt of seeing our industry using the same modern equipment as the Indians and that has become a reality now."
|The cast speaking to the media.— Photo by Yumna Rafi|
Ayesha Omer also spoke about her role which is a transition of a girl who is domesticated and later finds herself and evolves during the journey: "The character has a lot of shades and can strike a chord with any age group. The film carries important life lessons; it is not a meaningless, message-less film."
Yasir Hussain, who has an acclaimed background as a play writer, with Aangan Terrha and Sawa 14 August to his name, will not only be acting but has also penned down the storyline for KSL:
"It took me two and half a years to write the script for this film; I can assure you it will be a breath of fresh air."
|Yasir Hussain, Shehzad Sheikh and Ahmed Ali at the trailer launch. — Photo courtesy: KSL's Facebook page|
Playing Javed Sheikh’s ‘dream girl’, Mantahaa, who is a fitness trainer by profession would be marking her entry in the industry: "I had no experience in acting or modelling; arts was my passion. A friend of mine told me about Wajahat and that is how I became a part of the film.”
Read more: Karachi se Lahore: Pakistani rom-com set for 2015 release
"I wasn't expecting the industry would be this advanced; it was pleasant surprise,” she added.
Although not as quirky as Ho Mann Jahaan, the trailer was still able to grasp the audience. Catchy soundtracks and amusing dialogues left many in the audience chuckling.
Item song or not, ‘Tutie fruity’ did appear like a ‘situational song’ in relation to a scene in the film which demanded the performance. Ayesha Omer, whom many have seen evolve from a domineering student in Kollege Jeans to Khubsoorat in Bulbulay, would agree that the actor will make her presence felt in the film.
|Ahmed Ali and Rashid Naz. — Photo by Yumna rafi|
All in all, KSL can quite literally be termed as a family film with father-son duo of Javed Sheikh and Shehzad Sheikh both part of the crew. In addition, a new entrant child artist Aashir Wajahat who is director Wajahat Rauf's son, will also be acting in the feature film.